Pradyumna: (leads chanting, etc.)
niśamya bhīṣmoktam athācyutoktaṁ
śaśāsa gām indra ivājitāśrayaḥ
“Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, after being enlightened by what was spoken by Bhīṣmadeva and Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, the infallible,
engaged himself in matters of perfect knowledge because all his misgivings were eradicated.
Thus he ruled over the earth and seas and was followed by his younger brothers.”
Prabhupāda: So here is a responsible monarch, Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira. It is not that some rascal gets some votes and some way or other he sits on the president’s chair and secretly doing all nonsense. Just like your President Nixon is now detected, so many things. The monarchy was not like that. Here it is clearly said, pravṛtta-vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. Vijñāna-vidhūta. Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira was thinking that “For me, so many people have been killed. So I have become very, very much sinful. I am not fit for sitting on the throne, such responsible throne.” But his misgivings were dissipated by the words of Bhīṣma.
Bhīṣma, he is authority. Next to Kṛṣṇa, Bhīṣma is one of the authorities. There are twelve authorities. Svayambhūr nāradaḥ śambhuḥ kapilaḥ kumāro manuḥ, prahlādo bhīṣmo janakaḥ [SB 6.3.20]. They are the authorities of piety, religion. They are… Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ [Cc. Madhya 17.186]. We cannot decide what is actually piety, religion. But if we follow mahājana, great authorities, then certainly we are unmistaken. So Yudhiṣṭhira Mahārāja, now all the Pāṇḍavas along with Kṛṣṇa, they have come to Bhīṣmadeva for taking his last instruction. He was lying on the bed of arrows for death. So his father’s benediction was that Bhīṣmadeva would not die unless he desires to die. He was a very avowed brahmacārī, truthful. And Bhīṣmadeva recommended in the rājasūya-yajña that “Kṛṣṇa is greater brahmacārī than me. Although I am brahmacārī, but Kṛṣṇa is greater brahmacārī.” Why? “I am brahmacārī. I have avoided association of woman, but Kṛṣṇa, He was young boy and He had so many young girlfriends, still, He was not sexually agitated. He is the greatest brahmacārī.” That is the recommendation given by Bhīṣmadeva. When Śiśupāla was criticizing Kṛṣṇa, Bhīṣmadeva supported Kṛṣṇa, that “What kind of brahmacārī I am? He is greater brahmacārī than me. I think I could not save myself, keeping myself amongst the young girls. No. But Kṛṣṇa can do so. He is real brahmacārī.” So therefore His another name is Acyuta, “never falls down,” “infallible.”
Every living entity is fallible. Only Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead… Brahmā is fallible, what to speak of others, demigods. Brahmā was attracted by seeing the beauty of his daughter. Lord Śiva was fallible when he saw the beauty of Mohinī-mūrti. So what to speak of others. And Indra, Candra, they are all fallible. Only Kṛṣṇa is infallible. All others fallible. Therefore pravṛtta-vijñāna, bhīṣmoktam atha acyutoktam. Acyuta. Kṛṣṇa was addressed by Arjuna in the battlefield, “Acyuta.” Senayor ubhayor madhye rathaṁ sthāpaya me acyuta [Bg. 1.21]. Acyuta. Acyuta means… He was addressing Kṛṣṇa as Acyuta because he was feeling rather little hesitation that “Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, has voluntarily accepted the position of my driver, and I have to ask Him, ‘Mr. driver, please take me there.’ I have to order Him, and He has to carry.” Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, has taken the subordinate position of carrying order of Arjuna. Therefore he purposely addressed Him, “Acyuta, my dear friend Kṛṣṇa, don’t mind I am ordering You, but You have promised to carry out my order. You are infallible; so kindly do not take into mind, I am ordering You.”
This… Every word used in śāstra has got so deep meaning. Senayor ubhayor madhye rathaṁ sthāpaya… He could address Him, “Kṛṣṇa.” No, “Acyuta. You are correct to Your promise always.” And again, another place, Kṛṣṇa says, kaunteya pratijānīhi na me bhaktaḥ praṇaśyati [Bg. 9.31]. Kṛṣṇa asked Arjuna that “You declare to the world that My devotees will never be vanquished.” Why Kṛṣṇa asking Arjuna to declare? He could declare. He could declare, but the meaning is that sometimes, for the sake of His devotee, He breaks His promise. For the sake of His devotee. Just like Bhīṣma. Bhīṣma promised, “Kṛṣṇa, tomorrow either Your friend Arjuna will die, I am determined now, or You have to break Your promise.” Because Kṛṣṇa said, “I will not fight.” But when Arjuna was practically devastated by the arrows of Bhīṣma, he fell down, his chariot broke, everything shattered. Now Kṛṣṇa saw, “Now Arjuna is going to die.” So immediately Kṛṣṇa took the wheel of the chariot and went to the front of Bhīṣma: “Now you stop; otherwise I will kill you.” So this is fighting. So Bhīṣma saw, “Now Kṛṣṇa has broken His promise. I stop.” So to keep the promise of Bhīṣma, that Bhīṣma promised, “Either Arjuna will die, or Kṛṣṇa, You will have to break Your promise,” two things, so Kṛṣṇa said, “Yes, I am breaking My promise. Don’t kill Arjuna.” Therefore, for the sake of devotee, He sometimes break His promise.
But if His devotee promises, “I shall do it,” Kṛṣṇa will give him all protection: “Yes, it must be done. In all circumstances it must be done.” This is Kṛṣṇa. If His devotee promises something, that “This must be done,” Kṛṣṇa gives all protection. Therefore here it is stated, ajitāśrayaḥ. You cannot be successful without being ajitāśrayaḥ. Ajita. Ajita means Kṛṣṇa. Nobody can conquer Him. Ajita. Jita means conquered. Nobody is there who can conquer Kṛṣṇa. But Kṛṣṇa also can be conquered by His devotees. Just like the gopīs, they conquered Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa, I mean to say, accepted that “My dear gopīs, the service which you have rendered, I cannot repay. You have conquered Me. There is no possibility of My repaying you your service. You better be satisfied with your service. That’s all.” So Kṛṣṇa’s name is Ajita, Acyuta. These are Kṛṣṇa’s different names.
So Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, not that “Here I am getting the opportunity of becoming a prime minister or president. Let me jump over,” like monkey. Not like that. Not like that. He… He was convinced by the instruction of Bhīṣmadeva, by the instruction of Acyuta, when he saw that “If I sit down on the throne to rule over the world, I will be right in my position.” And that is Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira. Not only Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, all the kings who was emperor of the world, they were of the same nature, same nature. Therefore they were called rājarṣi. Imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ. Evaṁ paramparā-prāptam, rājarṣayaḥ [Bg. 4.2]. The Bhagavad-gītā, it meant for the rājarṣis. King, but they are saintly person. Therefore they are called rājarṣi. Rāja and ṛṣi, both, combined together, rājarṣi. So all the kings in those days, they were all rājarṣis. Not this rascal president.
So Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira ruled over the earth. Now, it is clearly stated, paridhyupāntām, “up to the limit of the seas.” That means all the seas—the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean, the biggest oceans, the Indian Ocean. That means the whole world. Here is the proof, that formerly the emperors in Hastināpura, Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, he ruled over the whole world. There was only one flag. That is also stated. Up to the time of Mahārāja Parīkṣit, there was no division. The whole world was Bhārata-varṣa, and the emperor of Hastināpura, they ruled over, paridhyupāntām. Anujānuvartitaḥ. He was not alone. His brothers, Arjuna, Bhīma, Nakula, Sahadeva, great fighters, great commander-in-chiefs, generals, they were at his command. Anujānuvartitaḥ. Whatever Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira will order… Otherwise, how could he manage such great empire? He had generals and commander-in-chiefs like Arjuna and Bhīma, indefatigable. Nobody could conquer Arjuna or Bhīma also. Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, personally he did not fight. His brothers were sufficient to fight for himself, as in the Battlefield of Kurukṣetra. He was not fighting, but his brother, Arjuna and Bhīma, was fighting. So well-equipped, Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, completely, scientifically. Vijñāna-vidhūta. Vijñāna means scientifically. Jñāna and vijñāna. Jñāna means ordinary knowledge, and vijñāna means practical knowledge. Just like in science, B.A.C., one has to pass the theoretical examination and practical examination. Without passing practical examination, theoretical you may know: hydrogen and oxygen makes water. No. In the laboratory you have to pass the examination, how to transform into water, two gases, hydrogen and oxygen. This is vijñāna.
So he eradicated his ideas. He was thinking that he was wrong. So when everything was clearly explained by Bhīṣmadeva, vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ, scientifically. Sentiment… In the śāstras there is no question of sentiment. In the Vedic knowledge, everything is vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. Education means to purify the knowledge, because we are all born animals. Abodha-jāta. Abodha. Abodha means one who has no knowledge. The animals, children, they have no knowledge. Just like we see the behavior of small children and household cats and dogs, their behavior is almost the same, no distinction. Because in that stage everyone is abodha-jāta, born fools and rascals. But the animals, there is no chance of educating them. Whereas human children, there is chance of educating them. Therefore, in the human society, there are educational institution. Children are sent there for education, and they become learned scholars later on. And if they are fortunate, by good education, they become vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. Vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. By instruction of high personalities, mahājana… Mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ [Cc. Madhya 17.186]. Bhīṣma is also one of the mahājanas, a great authority.
So this is the position of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, that completely being confident, completely being freed from all ignorance, then he sat on the throne. Just imagine what is the position of this monarch and these rascal so-called presidents. Sanātana Gosvāmī presented himself… Sanātana Gosvāmī and Rūpa Gosvāmī, he presented, both of them presented themself by Caitanya Mahāprabhu as nīca-jāti. Nīca. Nīca means lowest, lowest grade; jāti, born. But actually they were born of very high-grade brāhmaṇa family of Karnatak. But why they presented themselves as nīca-jāti? Because that is explained in Bhakti-ratnākara, that because their behavior on account of mixing with the Muhammadan kings degraded, therefore they considered themself as nīca. That is confirmed by the śāstras. You may take birth in high brāhmaṇa family, but by association and culture, if you become degraded, then you have to be designated as such degraded person. Not that you become degraded, at the same time, you keep yourself as brāhmaṇa. That is not possible. Yasya yal lakṣaṇaṁ syāt varṇābhivyañjakam. In the śāstra it is said that there are symptoms of varṇa. Just like in the Bhagavad-gītā you will find the symptoms, who is a brāhmaṇa. So these are the symptoms. Satyaṁ śamo damas titikṣā ārjavam, jñānaṁ vijñānam āstikyaṁ brahma-karma svabhāva-jam [Bg. 18.42]. So if you don’t find these symptoms, then how one can become brāhmaṇa? That is not possible.
Therefore in our Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, we are trying to develop the symptoms of brāhmaṇa. Not by birth; to educate them, how to become śamo damas titikṣā ārjavam. So therefore you all, you should know that… You are not born in the brāhmaṇa family. It may not be very hard word, but actually it is mleccha-yavanas. Mleccha-yavanas means the cow flesh eaters, meat-eaters. They are called mleccha-yavanas. Especially mleccha means cow-eaters. So you are coming from the mleccha-yavanas’ family, but you are being accepted as brāhmaṇa. Why? For the symptoms. You are being trained up to acquire the symptoms, śamo damas titikṣā. If you think that “Now I have got the sacred thread, I have become victorious,” no. You must always examine yourself, “Whether I am possessing all the symptoms?” Otherwise, you are no good. Simply by a thread, you do not become… Sūtram eva hi dvijatvam. Just like Kali-yuga, it is said a sūtram… Sūtram means this thread. If some way or other one gets this thread, he thinks himself he has become brāhmaṇa, no. To become brāhmaṇa is not so easy thing. One must acquire all these qualities. Śamo damas titikṣā ārjavam āstikyaṁ jñānaṁ vijñānaṁ brahma-karma svabhāva-jam. Unless you…
So you must be always alert whether you are fixed up in the symptoms. Then you are qualified brāhmaṇa. Otherwise you are again the same category as in India. Some of them, they are simply claiming to become brāhmaṇa on account of being born in a brāhmaṇa family, No. That is not the sa… Just like Rūpa Gosvāmī, Sanātana Gosvāmī. Actually, they were born in brāhmaṇa family, but they knew that “We have lost our culture, due to association with the Muhammadans always.” Therefore he presented himself, nīca-jāti. Nīca-jāti, nīca-karma, nīca-saṅgī. So if we deteriorate in our symptoms of brāhmaṇa, then that is not brāhmaṇa, that is not qualified brāhmaṇa. Therefore… It is a vijñāna. Vijñ\ ana-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. Everyone is uneducated. Everyone is born rascal and fool. He should be enlightened, elevated, by vijñāna-vidhūta. Vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ. This can be achieved when one is interested in the matter of self-realization, if one is interested. Ātma-tattvam. Parābhavas tāvad abodha-jāto yāvan na jijñāsata ātma-tattvam. If one is not interested in understanding his identification, what he is, ke āmi kene āmāya jāre tāpa-traya. As Sanātana Gosvāmī presented himself before Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu and his question was, “Ke āmi?” Tad-vijñānārthaṁ gurum eva abhigacchet. Strictly according to Vedic principles. Sanātana Gosvāmī approached the spiritual master, Caitanya Mahāprabhu, tad-vijñānārtham. What is that? “What I am?” To understand this, tad-vijñānārtham, the ātma-tattvam, self-realization.
So to become a disciple of spiritual master, unless there is awakening of this knowledge, to know “What I am?” there is no need of making a show, accepting a spiritual master. There is no need. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam [SB 11.3.21]. For whom guru is needed? Guru, spiritual master, is not a farce, that “Let me have a guru, nice guru. Then I become perfect.” And if you do not follow the instruction of guru… First of all, you must have a bona fide guru. And if you follow, then your life is perfect. So two things must be correct: the guru must be correct and the disciple must be correct. Then the business will be correct. And either of them, if guru is incorrect or the disciple is incorrect, there will be no action. So therefore Bhāgavata says, tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam [SB 11.3.21]. Who shall approach? Tad-vijñānārthaṁ sa gurum eva abhigacchet [MU 1.2.12]. According to Vedic instruction, everyone should approach a guru. But who is that everyone? One who is jijñāsu. Athāto brahma jijñāsā. One who is inquisitive to understand “What I am? Am I this body or something else?” That is beginning of spiritual instruction.
Therefore, in the Bhagavad-gītā the first instruction to Arjuna was to know that beyond this body, there is the soul.
dehino ‘smin yathā dehe
kaumāraṁ yauvanaṁ jarā
dhīras tatra na muhyati
The first instruction. The so-called spiritual institution, spiritual system, but they do not know that what he is, what they are. The bodily identification. Anyone who is bodily identified, there is no question of spiritual instruction. He is an ass. Yasyātma-buddhiḥ kuṇape tri-dhātuke, sa eva go-kharaḥ [SB 10.84.13]. The first spiritual instruction is, one must be convinced thoroughly, vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ, that he is not this body. “I am not this body. Ahaṁ brahmāsmi.” This realization, “I am spirit soul. I am part and parcel of the Supreme Brahman.” Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Brahman. Paraṁ brahma paraṁ dhāma pavitraṁ paramaṁ bhavān [Bg. 10.12].
So mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūtaḥ [Bg. 15.7]. Kṛṣṇa says, “All the living entities, they are My part and parcels.” So when the living entity understands that “I am part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa is Parabrahman. So I am not Parabrahman. I am the of the Supreme Brahman…” The Māyāvāda philosophy, they mistake this: “Because I am Brahman, therefore I am Supreme Brahman.” No. Supreme Brahman is Kṛṣṇa. I am Brahman, because I am part and parcel of the Supreme Brahman. Just like in your country, in America, you are American and the president Nixon is also American. Because you are American, therefore you are not President Nixon. That is rascaldom. President Nixon is different. Similarly, because you are Brahman, that does not mean you are Parabrahman. Parabrahman, is Kṛṣṇa. There must be distinction between the Parabrahman and the individual Brahman. This is dvaita-vāda philosophy. And the Māyāvāda philosophy, they say, “Because Parabrahman is Brahman, I am also Brahman; therefore we are one.” No. You are one qualitatively, Brahman. As Brahman you are one. But as Parabrahman and Brahman, you are different. This is acintya-bhedābheda, Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s philosophy, simultaneously one and different. As Brahman we are one, but as Parabrahman… Vibhu and aṇu. The Supreme is vibhu, all powerful. I am aṇu, infinitesimal. Infinite and infinitesimal.
So Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, when he was firmly convinced of his position, then he took charge, took charge of ruling over the whole world. Not… Just like at the present moment, India is a small tract of land, and that is also being divided now. Bangladesh has gone out. Pakistan has gone out. Some day some other province will… Not that. The whole world. He took charge of ruling over the whole world. śaśāsa gām indra iva. Indra. Indra is the king of heaven, heavenly planets. So as Indra is powerful… Nobody can even… Indra is never defeated. Sometimes there is fight between the devāsura, asura and deva. But when there is fight between the deva and asura… Deva means the demigod, and asura means the atheist class. They are always existing, the atheist class, two classes of men, atheist class and theist class. Viṣṇu-bhakto bhaved daiva āsuras tad viparyayaḥ. Those who are devotees of Lord Viṣṇu, Vaiṣṇava, they are demigods, and anyone else—all demons. Except Vaiṣṇava, everyone is a demon. You can say, “Now I am devotee of Lord Śiva. How can I be demon?” Yes, you are demon. Because Rāvaṇa was a great devotee of Lord Śiva, but he is described as a demon, rākṣasa. Rākṣasa. Hiraṇyakaśipu was a great devotee of Lord Brahmā. Still, he is described as rākṣasa, demon.
So if you are devotee of the demigods, you can become powerful for some time. Just like Hiraṇyakaśipu became. He took benediction from Lord Brahmā that “I shall not die at daytime, at nighttime, on land, on sea, on the sky. I shall not be killed by any animal, by any demigod, by any man, by any…” So many ways, definition by negation. “Not this, not this, not this.” First of all he wanted, “Make me immortal.” Brahmā said, “I am not immortal. How can I make you immortal? That is not possible.” Then he thought, “I am intelligent enough. I shall indirectly become mortal. I shall not be killed in this way, I shall not be killed in this way. No animal can kill me, no man can kill me, no demigod can kill me. I shall not die at night, I shall not die in daytime, not on the land, not on the sea, not in the sky.” In this way, whatever imagination he could manufacture, he settled up, “Now I am immortal.” But Kṛṣṇa is so cunning and intelligent that He kept all the promises of Brahmā; still, he was killed, Hiraṇyakaśipu. He was not killed at daytime. He was not killed at night. He was not killed in the sky, not on the land, not on the sea-on the lap. Hiraṇyakaśipu, he did not think that “I will have to die on the lap of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.” That was his fortune. Anyway…
So this is the way. And here it is said, śaśāsa gām indra iva. Indra. Indra, the demigods, they are always protected by Viṣṇu, always protected. Whenever there is fight between the demigods and demons, Lord Viṣṇu takes the side of the demigods. Therefore Indra is ajita-āśraya. He is confident that “I am protected by Lord Viṣṇu, Ajita.” Similarly, Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira also, when he was assured that “I am also protected by Kṛṣṇa, I am also enlightened by the instruction of Bhīṣma; my brothers, such big brothers, Bhīma, Arjuna, they will follow my instruction,” in this way, when everything was in complete, vijñāna-vidhūta-vibhramaḥ, then he accepted the throne. This is monarchy. This is king.
Thank you very much. (end)